Ohio lawmakers want to increase penalties associated with protests

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Editor’s Note: The video above is from a protest at The Ohio State University.

CLEVELAND (AP) — Ohio Republican legislators are backing four bills aimed at criminalizing or increasing penalties associated with behavior at protests.

Two bills are in the House and two are in the Senate, both controlled by Republicans members.

Two of the bills copy language directly from Ohio’s terrorism laws referring to providing “material support and resources” to those who help organize a riot as defined under current law.

It would also subject those who are deemed to have violated the law to racketeering charges.

Critics like the ACLU say the laws would have a “chilling effect” on free speech and are overly broad.

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